US medical professionals implicated in torture
Doctors and psychologists working in US military detention centers helped to design methods of torture for terrorism suspects, according to an independent report supported by the Institute on Medicine as a Profession and the Open Society Foundations that was released Nov. 4. The report, entitled "Ethics Abandoned: Medical Professionalism and Detainee Abuse in the War on Terror," examines various charges that the Department of Defense (DoD) and Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) "improperly demanded that US military and intelligence agency health professionals collaborate in intelligence gathering and security practices in a way that inflicted severe harm on detainees in US custody." Such methods, the report asserts, forced doctors to violate ethical and medical principles in order to inflict "torture and cruel, inhumane and degrading treatment" on detainees. While acknowledging that some steps toward improvement have been taken by the DoD in recent years, the report urges that further changes need to be made so that medical professionals are not made to undermine their own ethical standards.
From Jurist, Nov. 4. Used with permission.